According to a recent global survey of broadcasters conducted on behalf of Nevion, 82% believe that cellular networks like 5G will eventually replace traditional broadcast distribution like DTT/DTV and satellite as the preferred way to access TV content, with over a third (37%) of these respondents expecting this to begin happening within 1 to 2 years.
The survey was conducted by OnePoll on behalf of Nevion, and polled 225 broadcasters across Europe, Australia, China and Northern America aiming to understand how they envision using 5G and their perceptions of its capabilities. The survey discovered that 10% still anticipate that it will take more than three years for 5G to overtake traditional services but the great majority (94%) of broadcasters agree that 5G will likely increase the consumption of content.
As increasing numbers of people begin to favour streaming over conventional linear television delivery, the capabilities of 5G will help to cater to this audience and the demand to be able to stream content on the go.
With 5G set to enable viewers to stream live content on any connected device no matter where they are, Andy Rayner, Chief Technologist, Nevion, said, “5G systems can potentially deliver OTT broadcast services with the quality required not only for mobile devices, but also for TV screens at home. This could mean, as our research uncovered, that 5G is eventually likely to usurp DTT for consumers at home as well as on the move. In the long term, it is likely that 5G mobile infrastructure could become the standard means to deliver terrestrial television. However, it is expected that both DTT and 5G delivery, when ready, will co-exist for a reasonable time.”
Nevion says that hortcomings clearly exist with the current capabilities of mobile technology compared to DTT, which is highly optimised for power-efficient digital linear broadcast distribution. Also a key distinction lies between the potential of Service Provider offerings for broadcast media consumption and the use of 5G radio to serve as future real-time broadcast distribution.
These views regarding 5G as the primary means of distribution of TV content are reflected in the research findings. Half (50%) of the broadcasters surveyed think its primary challenge will be network performance issues and coverage issues (42%). This is followed by issues with reliability (26%) and network security (22%), as well as some broadcasters expressing concern about the environmental impact of 5G.
Nevertheless, the research uncovered broadcasters’ optimism about the potential of 5G in production with 95% of broadcasters expecting to adopt 5G within two years.
Andy Rayner said, “Ultimately, we are only just scratching the surface of 5G, and although broadcasters already see its potential value, at this stage industry-wide explorations into the technology are ongoing. It is too soon to say exactly at which point in the broadcast chain 5G will provide the most value. As such, broadcasters currently delivering with DTT will need to work with experts to follow the evolution of 5G broadcast capability.” nevion.com